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I feel really silly. Am I too old to study?

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#1 Indiana Bones

Posted 01 February 2013 - 12:57 PM

Today I sat an exam. And as I was leaving, I had a bit of a self crisis thinking to myself 'I'm just too old to be sitting exams!!!!!'
I am studying to hopefully become an anthropologist. Or archaeologist. I am in my second year. I am also 32 this year. I am also off campus, distance student.

I didn't go to uni when I was younger for a wide range of issues, but mainly related to finances.

I am starting to feel that I am just becoming 'too old' to be taken seriously once I graduate. I expect to be around 35 ish when I do. I also want to try to get into Honours and hopefully do a PhD, but I'm just a bit depressed at doing this in my 30s when I'll be competing with students a decade younger than me for potential jobs.

Am I being silly? Am I stupid in thinking I can career change when I'm in my 30s, with no experience in the field?

#2 whipmix

Posted 01 February 2013 - 01:02 PM

No way!
You are never to old to learn, we are always learning.
In terms of jobs, you may be a little old than others applying however you will have that maturity and life
Experience which I think is a huge positive.
Good luck with your studies!

#3 melaine

Posted 01 February 2013 - 01:02 PM

Not at all!

I studied at the same age - and wasn't the oldest in my course. Back in the old days when I did my original degree we had a number of 'mature age' students who did very well and have gone on to have fantastic careers after graduating in their mid 30s - 40s.

Good luck!

#4 B.feral3

Posted 01 February 2013 - 01:04 PM

I hope not because I'm older than you and doing my degree!!  unsure.gif

#5 opethmum

Posted 01 February 2013 - 01:05 PM

Nope not at all!

#6 Always amazed!

Posted 01 February 2013 - 01:05 PM

not silly..
im 321 soon and am starting tafe this year with hopes to get in to UNI next year.. I figure i have 6-8 years of study ahead of me making me around 36-38 by the time i finish.

#7 PopsiclePeach

Posted 01 February 2013 - 01:06 PM

I will finish my Law degree at the end of next year aged 36  ohmy.gif

Seriously, you are fine, you will bring 'life experience' instead of just a degree to your employer  cool.gif

#8 ms flib

Posted 01 February 2013 - 01:08 PM

I teach people over 60 in my course - you're never too old!

Actually, students your age are usually very motivated and focused and are a pleasure to teach!!

#9 blondie82

Posted 01 February 2013 - 01:08 PM

I'll join your band wagon OP if you want! I'm 31 this year and will undertake Inetrior Design and Architecture next year at uni ON CAMPUS (I just realised I'm going to look quite old next to all the 18/19 year olds  wink.gif )

I also didn't go to uni straight after school as I really just wanted to get out there and earn good money. I don't regret it all and I also think that I'm in a better frame of mind (**cough** maturity) to take study seriously. I'm trying not to think about the fact that I'll probably pushing 40 once my degree has finished.

Personally, I think you'll be taken MORE seriously when competeing for jobs as you'll have more life experience behind you.

Good luck!

#10 crayons

Posted 01 February 2013 - 01:08 PM

There is nothing wrong with "competing" against younger graduates for jobs, you have a lot of "life" skills that can be advantageous to potential employers.

#11 clueless33

Posted 01 February 2013 - 01:08 PM

You are not too old!! I'm about to start on my masters and I'm 41. The last time I was at uni there was no internet, computers....now I feel old unsure.gif

#12 DamiansMama

Posted 01 February 2013 - 01:09 PM

I'm looking to study also (undecided still)....I am a mere 37, will finish at 42.  ohmy.gif

#13 Froger

Posted 01 February 2013 - 01:11 PM

God no, I hope not. I'm a good decade older than you OP, and I'm only half way through my first undergrad degree.

But yeah, I also tend to have a bit of a crisis about my age when I go for exams or for compulsary residentials. Although there are a fair few mature age students there are not many older than me. The majority seem to be school leavers, so it does scare me a bit. But like you I didn't get to go to university when I was young, so this is my chance! For the most part I try to not let it worry me. I think a lot of people change job/career mid life now, so I'm sure we are not alone.

Edited by SarahM72, 01 February 2013 - 01:15 PM.

#14 HRH Countrymel

Posted 01 February 2013 - 01:14 PM


I had a student the year before last who was 79.... so he was nearly 81 when he finished the course!

Stop whining like the little baby you obviously are!  When you've got a few more years under your belt THEN we'll listen to you!

#15 50ftqueenie

Posted 01 February 2013 - 01:14 PM

I turn 40 this year and will be completing a Masters in Education on campus. Although it's 20 years since I was last at Uni, I don't feel that much older, just a hell of a lot wiser

Never too late!

#16 kpingitquiet

Posted 01 February 2013 - 01:16 PM

Pssht. I did my first attempt at study when I was 24. I'm now going whole-hog on it at 34, heading into my first year as a Sociology student. Yes, I've had to tailor some of my choices to adjust for the fact that I'll be competing with young grads who don't have kids, but it's not that limiting.

#17 Atomic Betty

Posted 01 February 2013 - 01:17 PM

Too old to study?  Goodness no!  I started a Bachelor of Nursing degree in 2011 and will finish end of this year at the ripe old age of 41 original.gif  I think 'life skills' on top of a degree will always be looked upon favourably.  Good luck!

#18 wickle pickle

Posted 01 February 2013 - 01:18 PM

So my mum decided at 69 or 70 to become a swim teacher.... now all the parents and students assume she's 'really experienced' because of her age - so it works in her favour!

Same for me, I became a high-school teacher at 32 and found the kids respected me more because they assumed I was a seasoned teacher...

So not exactly your situation but just some examples to show how being older when entering a profession can actually benefit you!

#19 feralangel

Posted 01 February 2013 - 01:28 PM

No way are you too old to study.

I began my undergrad degree aged 26; went on to do a Masters,and completed my second postgrad degree aged 42 whilst pregnant with my first child.

I may not have been the youngest in any of my classes, but i was by no means the oldest.

I wish you well with your studies.

#20 BeakyHoneyButt

Posted 01 February 2013 - 01:30 PM

I am 30 and just finished my dip-ed. I feel so glad that I didn't rush into any huge career decisions after completing my degree when I was 19. Some of the content in my dip ed I found really hard to decide where I stood with, I would have struggled at 19 to digest some of the concepts. I have a close friend who has just turned 18, he is starting a 6 year qualification at UNI this year, some variant of psychology .. something like this would have boggled my mind as a teen. Sorry, long answer to a short one is this,.....I think studying when you have more life experience is awesome, I got way more out of UNI the second time around  biggrin.gif

#21 ImpatientAnna

Posted 01 February 2013 - 01:34 PM

I am 31 and am studying to become a teacher. When I graduate I hope the DET takes into account the years of leadership experience I had in the workforce over 12 years and my experience with children as a mum. My 16 yr old nephew thinks I am waaaay too old for uni though!

#22 Jess1

Posted 01 February 2013 - 01:39 PM

I am 35 and will finish my first degree in accounting early next year, so I'll be 36.

I don't think it is too old and haven't had any issues, yes I am older than a lot of the students but there is an advantage to that which I am hoping my future employer will see (fingers crossed!).

f you think about it most could easily work up until 70 so that would be a good 30+ years in a career.  Makes me glad I didn't start out when I was in my early twenties as I would probably be looking for a change!

#23 Ally'smum

Posted 01 February 2013 - 01:42 PM

I thought you were going to say you were in your 50s! And even then I was going to say you are never too old.

I am 36 and still slowly finishing a degree for the career that I am currently in, but I have also decided that I would like a change of career in my 40s so I will have to study for that as well.

I hope to pay off my HECS debt by the time I am 60...

Also, universities are developing lifelong learning courses (in an effort to make more money of course) where you go back and do a short course every year, they would hate to know that you think you can be too old to study!

#24 ~~Cleopatra~~

Posted 01 February 2013 - 02:01 PM

When it comes to applying for jobs its not age its experience. See if you can get parttime or volunteer work in your field, that will help original.gif

I'm starting at Tafe next week to retrain for my second career, 10 years after I finished the job I first trained for. I am 40.

Edited by ~~Cleopatra~~, 01 February 2013 - 02:02 PM.

#25 emlis22

Posted 01 February 2013 - 02:04 PM

Err my Dad is doing a law degree... he is early 50s! He is in some of the same classes as my younger sister... but that's another story rolleyes.gif

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